Former President Donald Trump said the people arrested for the Jan. 6, 2021, riot are "hostages" taken by the American government, Reuters reported. Trump made this incendiary remark at a rally in Houston Thursday.
"I call them the 'J-6 hostages,' not prisoners. I call them the hostages, what’s happened. And it’s a shame," Trump told the crowd.
There were more than a thousand people arrested in connection with the incident that occurred at the U.S. Capitol. They were there to protest the results of the 2020 presidential election, but the demonstration eventually turned into a breach of the building.
However, many believe the punishments meted out to the people involved don't fit the crime. Trump is one of them and has previously shown his support for those wrongly given lengthy prison stays.
One of the ways he showed his solidarity was with the so-called "J6 Prison Choir." The former president released "Justice for All," which was a song featuring the prisoners singing "The Star-Spangled Banner" and Trump saying the Pledge of Allegiance.
Trump opened Thursday's rally using the recording. The former president stood saluting as the choir's piece was played.
Democrats have used the events on Jan. 6 as a rallying cry about dangerous Republicans. The narrative that continues to be pushed is that it was a "deadly" attack perpetrated by Trump's supporters.
In fact, Reuters included a tidbit almost three years later that continued the misleading story about that day. "Four participants died during the chaos, and five police officers died afterward, some by suicide," the news outlet wrote.
Important context is missing from those facts, which would seem intentional given the high professional standards to which outlets like Reuters hold themselves for accuracy. The only person to die as a direct result of violence that day was Ashli Babbitt, who was shot by a police officer, Tucker Carlson pointed out in a Fox News report.
In a remembrance ceremony marking one year since the incident, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries spoke somberly about five police officers who died on Jan. 6. "'Five heroic officers were lost,' he said," Carlson repeated.
"It's almost impossible to believe that adults could stand behind him as he said that because everyone in the picture you just saw knows that is not true. It's not a stilted interpretation of events. It's a flat-out lie," Carlson charged.
"No police officers were killed on January 6. Period. Ashli Babbitt was killed on January 6, but chances are our grandchildren will not know that because history will likely record the lie you just heard as true simply because it's been repeated so often," the former Fox News host went on.
"Everyone in authority has said the same thing in unison for two solid years. As our thoroughly dishonest Attorney General recently put it, 'We will never forget the five officers who responded selflessly on January 6 and who have since lost their lives.' His boss, [President] Joe Biden, repeated that lie today from the White House," Carlson added.
The lies of Jan. 6 continue to persist, and the people charged with crimes in connection with it are suffering greatly because of them. Trump is the only official with the guts to go against the narrative, and it's one of the things his supporters appreciate most about him.